Amidst my current binge on Brian Wood books (“DMZ,” “DEMO“ and “Northlanders“) over the last month, I’ve finally come to “Local,” the much touted indie-epic of the last few years. Ideal hipster girlfriend, Megan McKeenan, and her strange travels across the nation weave an immersive web of offbeat human interaction. I’m only a 3rd of the way through it but I’m fairly certain it’s one the most brilliant comics ever written. Also, the gorgeous hard bound edition I’m reading from (which encompasses the entire series) supplements the experience further with commentary by Wood and illustrator Ryan Kelley about each issue, including a suggested soundtrack to listen to with each issue. –Dandy Dan
I’m rereading the “Baroque Cycle” by Neal Stephenson. This will be time #4 through the fictionalized history of banking, calculus, piracy, counterfeiting and various Anglo wars. The twist this time is that I’m reading large portions of it aloud to my daughter which forces me to slow down a bunch and have consequently discovered many new wrinkles in the text. It’s such a shame that Stephensons followup, “Anathem,” was a crushing disappointment.
At present, I am reading “Socialism and America.” Written by cultural critic and erstwhile socialist Irving Howe, the book is a collection of essays looking at the American socialist movement, its victories and its pitfalls. A particular emphasis is placed on why socialism never really took root in this country, as well as Howe’s thoughts regarding the future of American socialism. –Dandy Will
At home I’m reading “The Whitechapel Gods” by S.M. Peters. It’s the first (I believe) novel by the author. It’s a steampunk novel with an odd artificial intelligence/deity twist thing. My car book, for the nonce, is “Door Wide Open.” It’s a collection of letters between Jack Kerouac and his oft-times lover Joyce Johnson. –Dandy Rob